The Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) has issued a termination notice to a developer who failed to rehabilitate slum dwellers in Andheri despite submitting a proposal in 2003. The wait for redevelopment at Junaid Nagar, Samata Nagar and Khajurwadi, has been longer: since 1996.
SRA officials said the notice was for terminating the proposal of Emel Ashok Enterprises and appointing a new builder to redevelop the ‘Basera Slum CHS’ unless urgent steps were taken. There are over 900 slum units on the 3.4 acre plot. Denying allegations of delay, the builder has told the SRA that an NGO had moved the Bombay high court, which ordered a stay on redevelopment since a part of the plot was reserved for a playground.
BJP MLA from Andheri Ameet Satam raised the question of the project delay in the state assembly last week. “Over 40 slum units were demolished and a transit camp and builder’s office constructed. This is illegal since an LOI hasn’t been issued. These findings are part of the report of the deputy collector (encroachment) and not just my allegations,” he said. “Many slum dwellers who gave consent for redevelopment (later shifted out). The SRA must… file an FIR against the builder.”
SRA secretary Ranjit Dhakne said in his March 2 order, “The builder has said that though the proposal was put up in 2003 and LOI was approved… it was not issued due to an HC stay… Later, work was also halted due to Covid-19. The builder must get an LOI in three months and start work in another three months.”
Vijay Sharma, partner at Emel Ashok, denied Satam’s allegations. “Due to the HC stay the project could not start. We are following SRA orders and will start work as soon as we receive approval from the authorities,” he said.